For over a decade now, states across the US have been trying to get all payer claims databases, or APCD’s, off the ground. Essentially, these state-managed databases collect information from insurers about many aspects of the healthcare, claims, and payment system, including ICD-10 diagnosis codes, charges for services at each care provider, how much was paid by both the insurer and the insured, and demographic information about the patient.
For a health system or hospital, the decision to outsource any element of their services must be carefully considered. New technology makes it easier than ever for vendors and a care provider to stay in communication about outsourced services. But, some decision-makers are still leery about quality control and efficiency once a set of tasks is handed over to a third party. As long as the hospital or health system finds a contractor they can trust, there are several clear ways that outsourcing can help a health system improve performance and profitability.
Settlement agreements between the three main consumer reporting agencies (TransUnion, Equifax, and Experian) and more than 30 state attorney generals from across the US have led to a series of reforms in credit reporting operations. These reforms are being implemented nationwide, and may have already impacted you as either a consumer or as a creditor, though deadlines for compliance are staggered across the next three years.
According to a recent report by the Urban Institute, national health spending by the end of the decade is projected to be as much as $2.6 trillion lower than forecasts developed in 2010.
Recently, John Oliver made television history by first buying, then forgiving the medical debt of 9,000 people. Oliver was able to purchase the $15M of debt for just $60k, cents on the dollar. When you divide it out, that’s an average of $1,660 owed by each person who benefitted from Oliver’s generosity.
The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) is a federal law which provides protection from financial obligation and liability to both military personnel and their families. This protection can even extend to liability for debt they incurred before they or their family member(s) entered service.
A CIO of a major healthcare system recently stated at a conference that customer complaints via Twitter didn’t concern him. This attitude needs to change across healthcare systems worldwide. Social media may seem silly or irrelevant at times, but the truth is, it offers hospitals an unprecedented ability to target and connect with existing and potential patients, and encourage them to stay loyal, paying customers.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have been trying to revise Medicare Part B for several months now. Their aim is to remove financial considerations from the prescribing of medicine; this movement stems from the discovery that for some practices, especially oncology, revenue from prescriptions makes up over half their profits. At one meeting, a CMS official heard a physician say he didn’t prescribe a specific medication to a patient purely due to cost considerations.
The Internet is a huge database of information, which includes medical knowledge like illness, disease, and injury. Sites like WebMD have been available to web users for decades now. Like all innovations, this has its good and bad implications. The impact of patient access to this information has been mixed, and the future only looks more unclear.
Thousands of previously uninsured people now have insurance, thanks to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). But the ACA has also changed the way hospitals are operating, making them focus more on patient satisfaction and education, as well as providing a rounded healthcare experience both inside and outside the hospital walls.